“You talk to the people and get to know exactly what their issues are, I’m not a farmer so I would need to go to the farmers and find out what their needs are.”
That’s Dr. Eric Wallace (R) and his take on what it means to be an Illinois State Senator. Wallace, a resident of the Village of Flossmoor who has his Ph.D. in Biblical studies, won the Republican nomination to take on Patrick Joyce (D) in Illinois 40th District this November.
The 40th District is quite diverse in people and location.
The District is unique, covering most of Kankakee County and areas of Will County. “You gotta worked with the various mayors and township supervisors, work with business owners and go back to Springfield and see what kind of legislation you can come up with that makes all these areas prosperous. It doesn’t have to be one or the other it can be both.” Wallace said of tackling the unique geography of the area.
To help the people of the 40th District make an informed choice in November, Candidate Wallace was kind enough to give a phone interview on his ideals and platform.
“If good people stay out of it, we get nothing but what we are getting now in Illinois with a lot of folks being arrested. Governors from both sides of the Aisle being arrested.” Wallace said, speaking of why he got into politics. “By running, I’m trying to light a candle and say ok, we can either leave this to all the corrupt folks or run ourselves and try and make a difference.”
Another reason that led Wallace to run was no one being on the ballot for the position in 2016. Saying, “We at least need to challenge for that seat.” continuing, “Democrats have controlled the 40th District for decades, and what have we gotten for it is what I would ask people.”
Into his politics, Wallace feels very strongly about his R. I. S. E (RISE for a new beginning) principles which are his platform. There is more detail on his website but I will briefly explain them now. R is Responsible Government, I is Individual Liberty and fidelity, S is strong family values, and E stands for Economic Empowerment.
“We have not had a responsible government, so the first thing is to get rid of the corruption in Illinois. I would love to see education reform and more charter schools I am for school choice, I think we have seen some really good things with good charter schools.” he continued, “We need to rethink the way we pay for schooling, let the money follow the child.”
Wallace also advocated for vocational schools because “Not everyone wants to go to college.”
Wallace addressed his education funding in this way, “Education and taxes go together, we have such large property taxes because that is how we pay for education. We need to find a better way to pay for education,” Wallace explained. “The assumption is we need more money for education my assumption is we don’t if we spend our money well we don’t need more money.” Wallace believes the money should go to the classrooms instead of the buildings. In saying this Wallace brought up Lincoln-Way North which closed in 2016 and was the result of a $225 million referendum in 2008.
Communication and listening was an emphasis in my interview with Eric Wallace, the idea of asking the constituents came up in a few different places.
Of Kankakee, Wallace had some ideas of what he would do if he got into office. Hopkins Park and Pembroke came up, and the idea of running natural gas out to those towns, but Wallace had another solution as well. “Let us also look at the possibility of renewable energy, solar panels lets look at the possibility of getting solar panels on people’s houses out there. Gas is not the only way.”
Sediment in the Kankakee River has been a big issue in the 40th District and in the area for some time. Wallace said he would talk to engineers and go over ideas of what to do. Wallace admits he does not know what to do but he would look at studies and determine what to do based on the opinions of those who are experts in what to do.
At the end of the interview, Wallace brought up a fact even he didn’t know until he started running. Eric Wallace is the only Black Republican candidate running in this election and would be the first Black Republican in the Illinois Senate since 1939. He said he would have pride in that and if he were to get elected he would have a standing in the Republican party to perhaps bring about change.
Wallace ended by speaking once again of ending corruption in Illinois and of Mike Madigan. “I’m tired of listening to stories of Mike Madigan getting away with murder, he is in charge of the democrat party and the house speaker, he controls who runs and who gets money and what goes through the General assembly. He is one man with way way too much power.”
For more information, Eric Wallace would like you to go to https://ericmwallace.com/
Country Herald’s showcase of candidates for the upcoming November Election will continue with State Senator Patrick Joyce (D) later this week.